We have a group of boys who are basically our little brothers – always around right outside the gate, jumping up whenever there’s something to be involved and able to help in, and – with the amount of time they’re around us – we are growing up together.
Last week, a week I saw prayers for “loving in the details and within a busy schedule” answered (thanks for being a prayer warrior if you’re one of them!), I was spending an out-of-the-ordinary calm thirty minutes just sitting and simply BEing with Dalinsky, Olbens, and all of the boys. Doing the same thing as always, but slowed down and beside them as the sun started to finally go down and relieve us from the overbearing heat of July.
With jokes, easy conversation, and comfortable silence – I was hit was a gratitude and overwhelming awe at the opportunity to do life together and how normal it is. What an opportunity. What a privilidge.
And in a dry and weary land. Not just from the heat, which is killer this week, and the lack of rain to go with it. Not just because I’m surrounded by hungry tummies, with hands thankfully and VERY quickly grabbing up dinner when we have some to share. But also weary with a lack of leadership, vision, and example of men. REAL men. Fathers who support their kids, leaders who plan with purpose, guys who pour into the next generation.
And here I am surrounded by a family God has transplanted me into. Man do I miss my Taylor brothers with a passion that springs water to my eyes quicker than I can remember I don’t like getting emotional – but I am surrounded with brothers. Breakdancing with my boot on and jokes about my residence, laughing with a contagious smile from Olbens that I cant help but be warmed by every time I get to see it. Joking with songs, crangle (creole – angle/english), and what Kiki is deciding to be strange about that day. These boys are family.
And in this bewilderment at our opportunity, I prayed.
Unwillingly, by the way, cause do I really have the time, strength, or wisdom for this?
But I can’t deny such a strong feeling in my heart and I pray for our role. For raising men up, as these boys age so fast. We are in this family. These boys are in a country, like America, that needs men. How do we love and influence our little brothers to fall in love with our Father? As they fall in love, I believe He takes care of the secondary consequence of being molded into a real man.
What does that even look like, who has the time, and am I nuts? But I pray. Half doubting, honestly, on real results.
Yesterday afternoon I had a spare hour while our visiting team explored Cabaret market. I sat down with a glorious ICED coffee and my Bible, ready for some Father time with the beautiful Creator (of ice, coffee, and cinnamon. Oh, He is good. Come on people – let’s celebrate the little amazing things that brighten our summer days!).
I hear voices first and feet second as the boys come in as a line, helping carry water upstairs. They jump up and do it all the time.
“Como ou ye Estephanie!”
They giggle as they greet me, setting down jugs and flashing white teeth as they half-sprint, half-dance back out.
Saint Pierre stops & says “w’ap li bib!” – “You’re reading the bible!”
The boys joke and try to read the english, then Olbens ‘calls a meeting’ and says Dalinsky should open us in prayer.
This is all with me simply sitting with my Bible, laughing, and then just dropping my jaw as they group together. A silent bystander watching it happen around me.
They then proceed to surround me and the table, take a seat with a creole bible from the stack in the corner, and with a giggle quickly turned serious by the ‘meeting leader’, they all turn to Luke together.
They read a chapter.
Then 1 Peter.
Then Psalm 18.
I sit back as they read in creole, as the leader pauses to tell the distracted boys to “Posè”, and keep trucking through passages. I pay attention to the reader and add a more “easy to understand” application when it’s a loaded reading.
I sit back and watch their faces as they squint and read the words of Jesus in Creole. And I see God as he is actively seeing and interacting with us.
Prayer can so often be seen in mundane activities as we look up and see that planted right in the middle of our schedule is our answer – that in day to day life of even a prayer we didn’t want to ask for as it seemed too big – we are in the middle of the prayers we have thought, written, said out loud to the Maker of Heaven.
God, you are so good. I am so excited for what you’re planning in the family you’ve placed me in. Give me faith & a willing heart.